The Center for Artistic Revolution, a gay rights organization, has mobilized a protest over an obituary policy in the Batesville Guard that omitted a gay man from the list of his partner’s survivors. The newspaper’s policy is that free obits will not include “common-law spouses, in-laws or significant others whether straight or gay,” owner-manager Pat Jones said Tuesday. She said the editor, Angelia Roberts, had a significant other and he, too, would be left out.

However, paid obits are different; survivors may write them as they wish, as long as they are of a reasonable length. A paid obit is $85 in the Guard.

Advertisement

Oscar Jones, Pat Jones’ son, said the policy was more about length than morals, but he said the paper probably needed to review it. Jones, a lawyer, said he was a strong advocate for gay rights, and was co-counsel for plaintiffs in the successful lawsuit that overturned Act 1, the law that would have prohibited gay couples from fostering or adopting children.

Help to Keep Great Journalism Alive in Arkansas

Join the fight for truth and become a subscriber of the Arkansas Times. We've been battling powerful forces for 50 years through our tough, determined, and feisty journalism. With over 63,000 Facebook followers, 58,000 Twitter followers, 35,000 Arkansas blog followers, and 70,000 daily email blasts, our readers value great journalism. But we need your help to do even more. By subscribing and supporting our efforts, you'll not only have access to all of our articles, but you'll also be helping us hire more writers to expand our coverage. Together, we can continue to hold the powerful accountable and bring important stories to light. Subscribe now or donate for as little as $1 and be a part of the Arkansas Times community.

Previous article Wednesday To-Do: Randy Rogers and Wade Bowen Next article Restoring order in Pulaski County schools